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Fetal Pediatr Pathol. 2009;28(3):139-50. doi: 10.1080/15513810902772482.

Comparison of needle autopsy with conventional autopsy in neonates.

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Government Medical College and Hospital, Chandigarh, India.


Tru-cut needle biopsy postmortems were compared with the standard conventional autopsy in neonates. Twenty-five fresh deceased neonates between 33 weeks of gestation to below 28 days of life were examined by both the techniques. Tissue collection by needle biopsy varied from 92% for liver to 20% for spleen while lung, brain, and kidney gave intermediate results. The cause of death could be determined in 17 cases (68%) by needle biopsy and in 24 cases (96%) by conventional postmortem. In 14 of the 17 cases (56%) cause of death could be determined by biopsy which was in full concordance with the findings of the full autopsy, whereas 3 (12%) cases showed only partial concordance and the diagnosis were discrepant in 32% cases. Needle autopsy missed diagnosis of various congenital malformations, which can be discerned only after meticulous gross examination. Needle autopsy is of value when permission for a complete autopsy cannot be obtained.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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